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TRANSFER CONFIDENTIAL COLUMN: Man United want THIRTEEN players OUT – but could be snubbed by Evan Ferguson – Liverpool eye Alex Scott, plus Chelsea and Palace’s 18-year-old striker target

Hello and welcome to another edition of our transfer newsletter, brought exclusively to you.

My name is Simon Jones and, as well as writing regularly in the Daily Mail and MailOnline, I’m aiming to give you insight, news and the latest chat from across the globe on all the deals taking shape ahead of this summer’s transfer window in this column.

It promises to be busy once again in the Premier League as the likes of Liverpool, Manchester United and Chelsea look to splash further millions in a bid to close the gap on Arsenal and Manchester City while those at risk of relegation will be in fear of the proverbial vultures preparing to swoop for their best players.

Manchester United's squad could be given a major overhaul in the summer under Ten Hag Manchester United's squad could be given a major overhaul in the summer under Ten Hag

Manchester United’s squad could be given a major overhaul in the summer under Erik ten Hag

 

Brighton bound for Nelson? 

He has impressed when called upon, which is why Arsenal want to hold onto winger Reiss Nelson. However, they face strong competition from Brighton.

The Premier League leaders have opened talks over a new contract with the 23-year-old, who is a free agent in the summer, and were hopeful of an agreement, but his pathway to Brighton’s first team may be clearer. 

Nelson has scored three goals in his four Premier League appearances this season and is keen to kick on after two loan spells away.

He had further interest from abroad but is understood to be attracted by staying in the Premier League with Brighton.

Reiss Nelson is open to a move to fellow Premier League side Brighton & Hove Albion Reiss Nelson is open to a move to fellow Premier League side Brighton & Hove Albion

Reiss Nelson is open to a move to fellow Premier League side Brighton & Hove Albion 

 

But Seagulls hope to tie down wonderkid Ferguson 

Now he could be the best thing to come out of Ireland since Guinness but Brighton are hopeful of agreeing a new contract with boy wonder Evan Ferguson before the end of the month – despite strong interest from Manchester United and Tottenham.

Roberto De Zerbi says Brighton are lucky to have the 18-year-old forward, who they picked up from Irish side Bohemians ahead of Liverpool, and says he can become a ‘European great’.

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To get Transfer Confidential sent directly as a newsletter to your inbox every Monday go to mailplus.co.uk/transferconfidential

United want Ferguson this summer, as well as a more experienced striker, while Tottenham see him as an heir apparent to Harry Kane. England captain Kane may yet decide to see out his contract and leave on a free next summer with Paris Saint-Germain and Real Madrid now lurking.

It’s true, towering teenager Ferguson supported United as a boy and idolised Wayne Rooney, but the fact is that he is getting invaluable experience and playing time under De Zerbi and sees no need to leave just yet.

Brighton know United also admire their midfielders Moises Caicedo and Alexis Mac Allister and expect offers for those two from Premier League sides this summer, but they have no desire to sell Ferguson unless a silly figure is offered and will reward his progress with improved terms shortly.

Newcastle and Chelsea also hold an interest in Ferguson but Brighton expect him to grow with them.

Evan Ferguson has emerged as one of the most exciting talents at south coast side Brighton Evan Ferguson has emerged as one of the most exciting talents at south coast side Brighton

Evan Ferguson has emerged as one of the most exciting talents at south coast side Brighton

 

Erik ten Hag ready to lead United clear out 

Manchester United are oiling the exit doors this summer as they look to move out up to 13 players.

There may be a bumper cash injection to come from new owners but they still need to reduce a bloated squad and stay on the right side of FFP guidelines.

Winger Anthony Elanga has over 12 clubs keen to take him and he is ready for a fresh challenge while there are not too many surprises in who else will be allowed to follow.

Eric Bailly has underwhelmed at Marseille and the French side don’t wish to make that move permanent. A £5m fee would have been triggered after 19 league games but they are keen to send the 28-year-old back. 

Harry Maguire, Aaron Wan-Bissaka, Alex Telles, Donny van de Beek, Brandon Williams and Anthony Martial all have question marks over their future too.

United have held meetings with representatives of players, such as Bayer Leverkusen right-back Jeremie Frimpong, and their priority remains a striker, then midfielder, centre-back, right-back and possibly a goalkeeper.

Amad Diallo is likely to be given a first team chance following his spell at Sunderland while Facundo Pellistri could go on loan for more experience once a new contract is wrapped up.

United’s new transfer negotiator Matt Hargreaves, who is joining from Adidas, is sure to have plenty of opportunity to earn his stripes.

Erik ten Hag is ready to wave goodbye to up to 13 Manchester United players this summer Erik ten Hag is ready to wave goodbye to up to 13 Manchester United players this summer

Erik ten Hag is ready to wave goodbye to up to 13 Manchester United players this summer

 

Liverpool join hunt for Bristol City star Alex Scott 

It seems Liverpool may also be taking an interest in Bristol City midfielder Alex Scott. 

West Ham and Wolves are already on his trail but Liverpool’s head of recruitment Dave Fallows and chief scout Barry Hunter were among the crowd to check on the 19-year-old as England Under 20s faced Germany last month. 

Scott hasn’t played since picking up a ligament injury on international duty the following weekend.

Bristol City starlet Alex Scott has attracted interest from multiple Premier League clubs Bristol City starlet Alex Scott has attracted interest from multiple Premier League clubs

Bristol City starlet Alex Scott has attracted interest from multiple Premier League clubs

 

Leeds in hunt for Man City star Charles

Leeds United have joined Borussia Dortmund by following Manchester City midfield prospect Shea Charles. 

The Northern Ireland international, 19, is highly thought of at City but first team competition is fierce, and they are keen to add more midfielders with Dortmund’s Jude Bellingham, Brighton’s Alexis Mac Allister and Gabri Veiga of Celta Vigo on their list.

City sold Romeo Lavia to Southampton last summer and have a £40m buy-back option which becomes active next year. 

They want to keep local boy Charles but know interest is building with Dortmund, Brentford and Newcastle also monitoring developments.

City also want a centre-back such as Leipzig’s Josko Gvardiol and a left-back but Chelsea’s Ben Chilwell, who was fancied, is discussing a new four year contract at Stamford Bridge.

Shea Charles is pictured in action for Manchester City's Under 21s against Tottenham in April Shea Charles is pictured in action for Manchester City's Under 21s against Tottenham in April

Shea Charles is pictured in action for Manchester City’s Under 21s against Tottenham in April

 

Price looks Belgium bound as Everton exit looms 

Teenage talent Isaac Price has decided Everton isn’t right for him and is close to joining Standard Liege in Belgium.

The 18-year-old Northern Ireland international had a big admirer in former manager Frank Lampard but was out of contract this summer. 

He held talks over a new deal yet a cut-price compensation move to Liege, home to many a famous Belgian, honest, looks likely.

Isaac Price is likely to leave Everton this summer with the Northern Ireland star Belgium bound Isaac Price is likely to leave Everton this summer with the Northern Ireland star Belgium bound

Isaac Price is likely to leave Everton this summer with the Northern Ireland star Belgium bound

 

Villa and Toffees in battle for Lopy 

Everton, mindful they could also lose Adama Onana this summer, have checked on Reims’ midfield powerhouse Dion Lopy in recent weeks – but so have Aston Villa.

Salernitana almost bought Everton striker Neal Maupay in January but will revisit talks in the summer.

Maupay, who has scored once this season, was chosen ahead of Blackburn Rovers’ Ben Brereton Diaz when bought from Brighton last August. 

Brereton Diaz, meanwhile, Stoke-on-Trent’s most famous Chilean, has signed a pre-contract to join Villarreal this summer.

Dion Lopy (left) is a transfer target for Premier League sides Everton and Aston Villa Dion Lopy (left) is a transfer target for Premier League sides Everton and Aston Villa

Dion Lopy (left) is a transfer target for Premier League sides Everton and Aston Villa

 

One to watch…

Chelsea and Crystal Palace are the latest clubs to post interest in Gambia striker Adama Bojang. 

The 18-year-old starred for Gambia’s Under 20’s in the recent AFCON tournament in Egypt and is expected to shine again at the Under 20 World Cup in May, with many believing he can become the next Victor Osimhen.

He is so similar to the Napoli man in style that the Italian side are also in the mix along with Tottenham and Brighton’s sister club Union Saint-Gilloise. 

Bojang, who plays for Steve Biko FC and is valued around £650,000, would struggle for a work permit but clubs have discussed investing then loaning him out.

Adama Bojang (left) of Gambia has attracted interest from Chelsea and Crystal Palace Adama Bojang (left) of Gambia has attracted interest from Chelsea and Crystal Palace

Adama Bojang (left) of Gambia has attracted interest from Chelsea and Crystal Palace

 

Newcastle relaxed over new Saint-Maximin deal 

Noise out of Newcastle is that they are in no rush to negotiate new terms with Allan Saint-Maximin. 

The Frenchman signed a six year deal in 2020 under the Mike Ashley regime but was hoping to be rewarded for his role in the club’s recent renaissance.

Newcastle improved terms for striker Callum Wilson earlier this season and will look at other key performers’ contracts towards the summer as they assess what budget is required for the next stage of their development. 

Newcastle are in no rush over extending a deal for star forward Allan Saint-Maximin Newcastle are in no rush over extending a deal for star forward Allan Saint-Maximin

Newcastle are in no rush over extending a deal for star forward Allan Saint-Maximin

 

Transfer speed dating?!

It was perhaps fitting that Chelsea’s Stamford Bridge played host to football’s equivalent of speed-dating last month when clubs across the globe sent representatives to meet up for the Transfer Room.

The brainchild of Jonas Ankersen, it is where football figures gather to jump round tables for 15 minutes with counterparts and share who is for sale, who is for loan or who is required. It’s not everyone’s cup of tea, mind. 

Asked by Sportsmail if he attended, one sport director, er, sat on the fence, saying: ‘God, no! The smarter ones among us prefer to do it in private, over nice lunches in five star hotels…’

The next one is scheduled for Brazil in July. Now, where are those budgie smugglers?

 

To get Transfer Confidential sent directly as a newsletter to your inbox every Monday go to mailplus.co.uk/transferconfidential

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